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Prep 10 mins
Cook 0 mins
Umami. Known as the fifth basic taste, some people liken it to the difference between the flavor of an almost ripe tomato and a perfectly ripe tomato. Also found in sea salt, cured meats, cheese and mushrooms, it imparts a savory heartiness that deepens flavor. This is a mixture of several different known umami ingredients. I've toyed with a recipe that was posted as "umami salt" by the breakaway cook, changing some of the ingredients and adjusting the method. Use in soups, salad dressing, sprinkled into casseroles, or wherever you want a richer flavor. A little goes a long way, so start with a small amount and increase to the level that suits you.
- 1⁄2 cup dried shiitake mushroom (original recipe calls for porcini, but any dried mushroom should work)
- 1 tablespoon sea salt (preferably sel gris)
- 1 tablespoon kelp powder (dashi powder from kelp would work if no MSG is added)
- 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese (finely grated)
- 1 -2 teaspoon brewer's yeast (optional)
- Place shiitake mushrooms in the oven at 350 degrees and toast until the pieces are dried and a bit brown. Don't burn.
- Grind the mushrooms in a food processor until powdery.
- Sift out the large chunks from the mushroom powder and replace the powder in the food processor bowl along with the other ingredients.
- Pulse until the ingredients are uniformly mixed and powdery.
- Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.